53. Memorandum From the Deputy Director for Plans of the Central Intelligence Agency (Wisner) to Director of Central Intelligence Dulles1
Washington, September 17, 1953.
- Conversation with General Smith
- The conversation which Mr. Berry and I had with General Smith this afternoon, and which I discussed with you before going over to see the General, was of only about fifteen minutes duration. I was able to bring up all of your points but did not get satisfactory answers on one or two of them.
- General Smith indicated his strong agreement with our recommendation that some form of State Department rejoinder or rebuttal be dealt out to the Guatemalans. He held on to my memorandum which he promised not to show to Mr. Cabot, and he said that he was going to instruct Cabot to get cracking and do something about this. Mr. Berry presented a brief memorandum proposing a planted question and an answer for the Secretary to make at his next press conference. General Smith accepted this but said that he wished to do more. He rang for Cabot to come to his office, but Cabot had apparently gone home.
- I raised the subject of Honduras and said that our point here was that greater strength was needed in the Embassy since there will be an important role for Honduras to play. Mr. Berry spoke up saying that the present Ambassador is “an old fuddyduddy” who has served out his period of usefulness and who should be replaced by a younger and more vigorous man. General Smith appeared to be interested in this, and said that he would ask Mr. Lourie to take the appropriate action. He rang for Mr. Lourie who had apparently gone home. Mr. Berry undertook to remind General Smith to speak with Mr. Lourie tomorrow morning.
- I asked General Smith what he proposed to do about Mr. Willauer. General Smith said that he had repeatedly stated that Willauer will have to scratch his own gravel and ring his own doorbells; that he (General Smith) did not make diplomatic appointments; and that he did not propose to sponsor or push for the appointment of Willauer to any particular diplomatic post. In line with my previous discussions with [Page 112]you on this subject, I took no position at all concerning Willauer and confined myself to the question above-indicated.
[3 paragraphs not declassified]
Frank G. Wisner2